The Phanteks P400S TG is a case of style, beauty, and quality for an amazing price point of $89. A case that is designed from the beginning to show off your PC components in the best way possible. Lets dive deeper and see what this case is truly made of.
Even for the reasonably cheap price of $90, the quality is amazing, the hinges that hold the tempered glass and the tempered glass itself are very beautiful. The front intake is simplistic, yet beautiful and well crafted. The RGB lighting in the front that illuminates the Phanteks logo is very soft, and isn’t noisy like other RGB lighting out on the market.
The tempered glass itself is an amazing upgrade from older Plexi-Glass, if you haven’t experienced tempered glass on a case before, you’ll be amazed at how crisp and clear it shows off your CPU cooler, motherboard, graphics card and case fans vs. Plexi, similar to going from a Full HD to Ultra HD display.
Because this is a Silent Edition variant of the P400STG, the top fan ports are covered in sound dampening covers which you can replace with dust filters if you plan on using those fan mounts. Phanteks does include the extra fan filters in the box aswell which is a nice touch.
My only small complaint with the exterior finish and design is the button placement of the reset switch, fan, and RGB LED buttons which are placed on the bottom of the top lip, just above the white intake grill, these buttons are sort of annoying to press as you somewhat have to sqeeze your fingers to press them fully. It’s simply not a pleasant experience. It is also very easy to mistake the reset switch for the RGB LED button, so keep in mind of that.
Interior & Functionality:
The interior is very well balanced between white and black, the entire motherboard tray and grommets are black while the entire PSU shroud is white. Excellent for those doing white and black themed builds. Also white are the covers for the optional four 3.5 HDD mounts that you can add to the front. So if you want your P400TG with a lot of hard drive capacity you can do that aswell, though keep in mind that front you loose ALL radiator support in the front when doing so. That leaves you with only 140/120mm AIOs and air cooled options.
The PSU shroud is awesome for building with, it keeps all your cables very tidy and hidden away, allowing you to not only make a super clean look in the front, you are also capable of making the rear portion very clean and tidy.
Speaking of rear cable management, Phanteks includes three company branded cable management Velcro straps attached directly to the case itself, they are wide so you can fit a lot of cables into one Velcro strap, unless of course your using just the right length of extension cables for both your motherboard and graphics card like I had.
The hard drive cage supports up to 2 3.5″ or 2.5″ storage options, the entire cage can be removable as well, making way for either extra cable management and/or support for a 360mm rad in the front (for a 360mm rad to work, you’ll also need to unscrew the white cover above the hard drive cage to gain access to all three fan slots).
My biggest issue with the functionality of this case would be the proximity of the cable cutouts to the motherboard itself. On my Z97-A motherboard, I could not fully install non-L shaped sata cables without bending them in a weird and difficult position. Of course L shaped sata cables easily resolves this issue, but it would be nice for compatibility of both shapes, since motherboard manufactures never include exclusively L shaped sata cables with your motherboard, and if your buying a case in this price range, there is a good chance you don’t have spares lying around either.
Besides these rather small but important issues, building in the Phanteks P400STG was a breeze. It will especially be easy for newcomers to PC building as the cable cutouts, Velcro straps, and PSU shroud make it stupidly easy to figure out where every single cable should go.
Performance (The Ugly Part FYI…):
The P400STG is a very strange beast when it comes to your cooling configurations, while there are plenty of options to choose from like an air cooler, front mounted 120/140mm AIO or a 240/280mm AIO, and even a 120mm AIO in the rear, not all of these configurations are equal.
The biggest problem with this case is the fact that it’s most popular and most recommended cooling configuration (ie. Front mounted 240mm AIO), is the WORST cooling configuration for this case. The P400STG’s front intake is one of the most restrictive out of all other cases in it’s class, with only two intakes on the top and bottom, 100% of that air travels thru the radiator and is heated into the case. Compare this to other cases like the NZXT S340, the P400’s biggest competitor, which has a much larger area of intake, even though the front is still blocked, the S340 has over inch of space between the front cover and the front fans, allowing plenty of air to not only go in the radiator, but also around the radiator, allowing both hot and cold air to get into the case.
However, putting a front mounted radiator onto the P400STG will only affect you badly if you use a NON blower style graphics card, or no graphics card at all (though if your overclocking, I don’t recommend it (even if you don’t have a GPU in the case), simply because the VRMs will get pretty hot and need cold air…). If you use a blower style graphics card like the Founders Edition GTX 1060, 1o70, 1080 or 1080 TI, then you’ll be fine, most likely as the GPU won’t be pumping out hot air into the case, rather the GPU will only be capable of pumping out heat out of the case, which is how blower style coolers work.
The case itself is absolutely gorgeous, if you are the user who has a mid range budget for a computer, but want’s to make it look good with a few cable extensions, RGB lights and tempered glass, this is the case to use!
However as I said above, be warned of the cooling configuration you use. Air cooling would be my most recommended configuration for cooling your CPU, as the front intakes can intake completely cold air and not hot air (like a radiator would) into the case.